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Space Travel and Exploration

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AP

Europe's first mission to the moon is due to crash-land in a cloud of dust and rock early Sunday, ending a three-year voyage that gathered data about the lunar surface and tested a new engine intended to propel future spacecraft to Mercury and ot

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Space.com

Ground controllers today successfully performed a major maneuver of NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter—an “end game” tactic that puts the orbiting probe a step closer to studying the red planet with its entire suite of science sensors.

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Space.com

Odd flashing pulses coming from a super-magnetic star called a magnetar have astronomers glued to telescopes across the globe. Magnetars are particularly energetic versions of neutron stars, which are the burned out remnants of regular stars.

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AP

Pluto, beloved by some as a cosmic underdog but scorned by astronomers who considered it too dinky and distant, was unceremoniously stripped of its status as a planet Thursday.

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Space.com

The true abundance in the Milky Way of a heavy, primordial form of hydrogen has eluded scientists for decades, but it turns out that huge quantities of it have been hidden in the dust that is scattered between stars.

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Space.com

Solar activity is near the low point in the cycle now. Few sunspots appear and solar flares are rare. But on July 31, a tiny sunspot appeared and then vanished after a few hours. It was a normal event, except that it was magnetically backward.

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Space.com

Unshaken by a launch failure of its Falcon 1, Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) is pressing forward on a return-to-flight of its privately-built booster. The maiden liftoff earlier this year and subsequent loss of Falcon 1 has led to a shakeout

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Space.com

If there are other occupants of this galactic neighborhood, we could turn up a signal. But then what? Would the discovery be put under wraps, either voluntarily or by government edict? If we found a signal, would you know?

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AP

Suggesting a solution to a years-old puzzle, scientists say the dark spots that appear on the south polar region of Mars each spring could be caused by violent eruptions of heated gas. An analysis of images from NASA's Odyssey orbiter suggests j

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Space.com

The tally of planets in our solar system would jump instantly to a dozen under a highly controversial new definition proposed by the International Astronomical Union. Eventually there would be hundreds as more round objects are found beyond Neptune.

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Space.com

But Apollo 11 is a memory rewind—now over 37 years old. Nobody is quite sure just how much longer the original slow-scan tapes will last … that is, if they haven’t already been erased. [They're not lost, we can't find them.]

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Space.com

Theorists have long suspected that the competition between gravity pulling inward and magnetic pressure pushing outward would produce a warped, hourglass pattern to the magnetic field within these collapsed cores. Now they've finally found jus

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Space.com

As you stroll through the desert airport/spaceport here, you don’t see a “Keep Out! Spaceliner Under Construction” sign. On the other hand, there’s a palpable feeling that behind closed hangar doors, the future of public space travel is, indeed, a wo

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PRAGUE (Reuters)

Some 3,000 astronomers and scientists from around the world will meet in Prague this week to decide whether Pluto, discovered in 1930, measures up to the definition of a planet.

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Space.com

Those industrious robots on Mars—NASA’s Spirit and Opportunity rovers—remain on duty as they gather new science data from their respective spots on the red planet. Opportunity has just concluded a survey of Beagle Crater, a relatively young featur

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Reuters

The case of the lithium that has gone missing since the Big Bang has been solved -- the stars swallowed it. The discrepancy between the quantity of lithium estimated to have been created at the start of the universe and the small amount now actually

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Space.com

n 2003, astronomers discovered a planet outside our solar system by measuring the way light from a distant star warped around the new world's host star. But it took two more years of telescope observations to actually see the host star. Using

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